The Coup in Myanmar

Myanmar Coup
Protestors in Myanmar want the military to free their leader, Aung San Suu Kyi.

Myanmar is the 10th largest country in Asia. About 54 million people live there. On February 1, the army took control of the country. The military removed the country’s elected leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, and her government from power.

Ms. Suu Kyi has been the leader of Myanmar since her political party won the country’s elections in 2015. Since then, however, the army has kept control of much of the government. The day the military took over, many people who have worked to keep Myanmar a democracy were taken to jail. The country’s main airport was closed, flights were cancelled, and the internet and cell phones stopped working for a short time. The military wanted to be sure that people and information could not leave the country.

The army’s leader, Senior General Min Aung Hlaing, was put in charge of the country. He said that the country would hold elections in a year.

Why did the military take this step? The military’s leaders said that the country’s election in November was unfair. They said not everyone had the chance to vote. Most people in Myanmar don’t believe this story. General Min Aung Hlaing’s time as army leader was going to end in the summer of 2021. Now he will stay leader of the army.

Most countries around the world have said this action is wrong. Myanmar’s citizens are protesting. They want their leader to be freed.

What Do You Think? Why do you think the military wanted to take over the country of Myanmar? Do you think the protests will help? Why or why not?

Photo Credit: Xiao Long/UPI/Alamy Stock Photo